The first fruit of the reborn RSL was the CG4 system reviewed in the September 2011 issue of Sound & Vision, followed by the smaller and very affordable CG3 system, which was reviewed in March 2017. Now RSL has returned with the CG5 system, a more ambitious, but still affordable, replacement for the CG4.
The CG5 series consists of just two models. There’s the CG5 ($400 each) itself, a stout two-way bookshelf with a 5.25-inch aramid fiber cone woofer and 1-inch silk dome tweeter, and the CG25 ($500 each), a model with a slighter longer cabinet to accommodate a second 5.25-inch woofer. The CG25’s design allows for it to be used either in a vertical orientation in a normal stereo setup or flipped on its side to serve as a low-profile center speaker
And the BenQ didn’t just excel in terms of its accuracy; the overall picture is equally appealing. Watching The Expanse on Amazon Prime in 4K SDR reveals images that are often spectacular. The projector might not be native 4K, but its XPR trickery results in perceived 4K images that don’t reveal any pixel structure, even when viewed up close.
An orbital assault exposes all the detail in the intricately rendered spaceships and station, while highlighting a DLP strength: smooth and judder-free motion. The sunlight reflecting off the ships’ hulls is suitably bright and the blacks of space are deep enough to leave the dynamic iris off. The projector’s adherence to REC.709 also ensures stable colours and excellent flesh tones.
Covering parameters for 8K input (bit depth, frame rate, chroma sub-sampling), display performance (resolution, peak brightness, black level, color gamut, white point), interface, and media formats, the new technical specification is built around HDMI 2.1 and the HEVC (high efficiency video coding) codec and specifies a resolution of 7,680 x 4,320 (or 33 million) pixels, which is four times that of the 4K Ultra HD standard; input frame rates of 24p, 30p, and 60p frames per second (fps); and display luminance that exceeds 600 nits peak luminance. ”
To test out the Ambeo, I first turned to movie playback using the soundbar’s heavy-duty 3D modes. Watching Avengers: Infinity War in the Standard 3D mode, the opening dialogue between Loki and Thanos provided a great introduction to the surround excitement to come, with their voices mixed over ominous deep strings and a subtle pounding of footsteps that filled the room. The punches when the Hulk battled Thanos, along with wide imaging from the score, came from all around, with a convincing amount of sound from above and behind. But the most dramatic effect was a swirling sound as the oracle Heimdall released his massive powers. When Thanos puts the Space stone from the Tesseract onto his hand, the force pulse expanded out radially from all directions of the soundbar, with a believable amount of sound coming from above.”
Such qualities were evident on “Thomas County Law” by Iron & Wine, with Sam Beam’s vocals emanating solidly from the center and the resonant hand slaps on the body of his acoustic guitar filling the front of the room in a realistic manner. An electronic music track, Aphex Twin’s “Produk 29 ”, also sounded impressively spacious and full, but the slightly crisp tone of the track’s snare drum and hi-hat samples caused me to knock back the SL8YG’s treble control to the -1 position. The song’s powerful bass came through with good definition—this is clearly not your typical one-note soundbar sub. I did occasion- ally hear some leanness in the system’s upper bass range, but the blend was acceptable for the most part.